Sebring BMW M3 Hour 9 Report
PROTOTYPE TECHNOLOGY GROUP BMW M3 1999 SUPERFLO 12 HOURS AT SEBRING, GT CLASS after nine hours, March 20 The Prototype Technology Group (PTG) BMW M3 team has had a disappointing second half of the 12 Hours of Sebring. Car ...
PROTOTYPE TECHNOLOGY GROUP BMW M3 1999 SUPERFLO 12 HOURS AT SEBRING, GT CLASS after nine hours, March 20
The Prototype Technology Group (PTG) BMW M3 team has had a disappointing second half of the 12 Hours of Sebring. Car #10 is out of the race and car #7 is currently sixth in the GT class.
Car #10 completed 200 laps on the 3.7-mile Sebring International Raceway before an apparent engine problem ended a frustrating day for the team. "We don't know what the problem is. Water was leaking, so we turned it off," team owner Tom Milner said. Boris Said was driving when the decision was made to retire from the race. His co- drivers were Hans Stuck and Peter Cunningham.
Car #7 was leading the class when the left-front wheel came off the car in the hairpin area of the track. Johannes van Overbeek drove the car back to pit lane for repairs, but several laps were lost before the car returned to the race with Brian Cunningham at the wheel. The other #7 driver is Mark Simo.
BORIS SAID, #10 PTG BMW M3 driver:
"This is a tough place on cars. We made it to three hours from the end and the motor blew. But we'll be back for Atlanta and we'll be strong and tough. Besides, it's only three hours!"
Said was driving the #10 car when the ignition box failed. He was able to get out of the car and change the box, so he could drive back to pit lane. He said it reminded him of a six-hour Escort Endurance Series race at Sebring in 1987. At the time, he didn't have a crew, so drove the car and changed his own tires during pit stops. He used rims and a fuel pump from his rental car. Despite the slim budget, Said finished ninth in the race to clinch the series manufacturer title.
MARK SIMO, #7 PTG BMW M3 driver:
"At this point, we'll just salvage as many points as possible. If there's an upside, it's that we finished ahead of [car #10 team-mates] Hans Stuck, Boris Said and Peter Cunningham. Our little group really thought we had a shot at it today -- it doesn't happen very often in racing that you really feel that -- but a simple problem put us out of contention. But it doesn't take away the momentum of the team. We'll be just as focussed going into Atlanta."
JOHANNES van OVERBEEK, #7 PTG BMW M3 driver:
"The front left wheel came off. At first I was afraid it was a suspension failure, but luckily through TV we were able to see it was just the wheel, so I could drive it back on three wheels."
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